Live coverage of the 2013 MLB Draft moves over to mlb.com today, which hopefully means less Harold Reynolds and more Mayo and Callis. As always, complete OV draft coverage is here. The pace should be much more frenetic today. I’ll try to keep this thread updated with miscellaneous draftee blurbs rather than splitting out separate profiles.
What to Watch For
As mentioned yesterday, it will be interesting to see if the Cubs go on another pitching run, as they did last year. I wouldn’t bank on anything, particularly because I’ve read that last year’s draft was particularly deep in college arms. Also of interest will be how many signable seniors the Cubs opt for in the interest of spending a little more money in rounds 11+. I haven’t seen anything specific on whether the Cubs think they can sign Bryant for under slot value, but I wouldn’t necessarily rule out a bit of a discount, given that Gray was widely publicized as a consensus #1 or #2 overall. In addition, commenter 2883 speculates that Zastryzny could be an underslot guy:
Just sayin’ / not sayin’, lefties who only throw 92 who struggle with their command, aren’t good prospects, Seems more like a signability pick than a guy whom they were coveting. I would expect at a bare minimum one or two big picks tomorrow
Best players left include : C Jon Denney OF Cord Sandberg (no relation) and OF Ryan Boldt (al of whom are committed)
We could very well see the Cubs take a bigger name with a college commitment. Keep the best available list close at hand.
Kris Bryant and Rob Zastryzny
Here’s a nice clip of Kris Bryant’s swing in slow motion from ESPNU. Looks pretty good to me.
The San Diego Union Tribune has a piece up with some quotes from Bryant. On getting pitched around:
Hill said Epstein asked him what Bryant’s flaw was, if he had one.
“Kris doesn’t get pitched to, ever,” Hill said. “Sometimes that 10-year-old boy comes out. He’ll scream, yell: ‘I want to play, too. Give me a pitch I can hit.’ ”
By the middle of the season, Bryant was getting pitched around so frequently that Hill moved the nation’s home run leader to the leadoff spot, so that at least once a game he’d see strikes.
Zastryzny seems like a bit of an odd duck. A few quotes
“If I would have gone in the first round, I would have gotten paid more or whatever,” he said. “But I’m glad. Because at 41, that means everyone passed over me. And now I have a reason to hate every other team in baseball. It worked out perfect.”
I’m not going to criticize at all here because I hope he never starts being less quotable, but I find that statement funny and a little mystifying.
Zastryzny, who has one more year of college eligibility, stopped short of saying he’s done playing for Mizzou … but he’s done. There’s no guarantee he’ll boost his stock with another year of college baseball, and for a 21-year-old who wasn’t drafted coming out of high school, Zastryzny sees this as his golden ticket into a professional career.
“I expect (the Cubs) to treat me fairly,” he said. “I’m willing to accept fair treatment. All signs point to me being gone. I’m excited to go. The Mizzou coaches and I talked about it. They didn’t expect me back. They just want what’s best. And I want what’s best. I had a great career there. I wouldn’t have changed a thing about it. Hopefully if all works out I’ll be a Chicago Cub.”
FWIW, a few scouts seem to really love the pick despite the low-ish mlb.com and BA rankings:
— Kendall Rogers (@KendallRogersPG) June 7, 2013
In my opinion, after the first round, it gets pretty hard to separate these guys. The difference between 40 and 100 is a lot less than between say, 1 and 30. In short, I’m not going to start criticizing the front office just yet.
#75 Jacob Hannemann, CF, BYU FR (BA #214)
Drafted by the Royals in the 48th round out of high school in 2010, Hannemann headed to Brigham Young to play football and baseball. He went on his two-year Mormon mission in the spring of his freshman year, then showed his natural talent by hitting for the cycle in the team’s fall alumni game when he returned. A cornerback for the football team, Hannemann is 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds with loose athleticism. He is a well above-average runner and has some work to do defensively, but he has the tools and instincts to stay in center field, though his arm grades out at the bottom of the scouting scale. A lefthanded hitter, he has a compact swing with natural strength. He needs to work on his pitch recognition, but has performed well considering he was away from the game for two years. Scouts love his makeup and intensity on the field. Already 22, Hannemann is the rare draft-eligible freshman. He’s a high-risk, high-reward pick with Jacoby Ellsbury upside.
Hannemann is only a freshman, but don’t let that fool you. The two-sport standout went on his Mormon mission before heading to college, making him 22 years old. Also a football player, Hannemann has some athletic tools to work with, even if they are a bit raw. The WCC Freshman of the Year hit well in his first taste of college ball, impressive considering he hadn’t played in two years. He has the chance to hit and run well and could be a solid center field prospect for a team willing to be patient.
Keith Law thinks the #41 and #75 are signability picks to facilitate the signing of Kris Bryant:
Most of my “best remaining” guys are probably unsignable – Serrano, C Jones, Boldt, Brentz, G Williams, Wahl, A McGuire
— keithlaw (@keithlaw) June 7, 2013
2883 thinks a tough sign might be coming later on:
Bryant might require 7 mil to get signed which is 300k over slot. but I’m guessing they can get both of the last two guys at least 300k under slot. I still think they have one or two big overdrafts in the top 10 rounds under their sleeves. a high upside HS arm makes the most amount of sense (Serrano, Garrett Williams, Connor Jones). Maybe I’m wrong, it could be all for Bryant but the Cubs are building a nest egg here with the draft picks they’ve made.
#108 Tyler Skulina, RHP, Kent State JR (BA #73)
Skulina played a key role in Kent State’s Cinderella run to the 2012 College World Series and has taken on an even bigger role this spring as the Golden Flashes ace. He relies on his fastball-curveball combination to attack hitters and isn’t afraid to challenge them. Skulina’s fastball sits in the low-90s and runs in on right-handers. His curveball has good break and should be a Major League average offering. He uses his 6-foot-5, 235-pound frame to create a good downhill plane for both pitches. Skulina needs to develop his changeup to reach his potential.
#138 Trey Masek RHP, Texas Tech JR (BA #49)
Masek had a very strong summer in the Cape Cod League and it was carrying over as Texas Tech’s Saturday starter, though some arm soreness in late March kept him out of action for a spell. Assuming health, the slightly undersized right-hander will show three pretty good pitches. He can run his fastball up to 94 mph, throws a solid curveball and has a good feel for a sinking changeup. His funky delivery adds deception to his stuff, though his command can be inconsistent. He gets high marks for his aggressiveness and poise on the mound. That, plus Masek’s size and injury history, have some thinking his future might be in a big league bullpen.
Highest ranked guy the Cubs have taken since Bryant according to Callis. I wonder if he’ll also require overslot money. Seems like pretty decent numbers for a Big12 school. I like what I see in the video, for what that’s worth. Keith Law had him in his top 100, and thinks he’s a future reliever.
#168 Scott Frazier, RHP, Pepperdine JR (BA #160)
The run on pitchers continues, with 3/4 taken since Bryant.
The big right-hander served as Pepperdine’s Saturday starter in 2012, then moved into the Friday slot as a junior, continuing to show the big arm that has always intrigued scouts. His fastball sits in the 91-94 mph range, and he backs it up with a curve and changeup. He’s shown gradual improvement over time with the Waves and while his results as a junior have been up and down, he’s the kind of college arm that could sneak into the back end of the first round. After his sophomore season, Frazier pitched in the Cape Cod League to cap off 2012. Even with his uneven performances, his size and arm strength were still getting a lot of interest as the Draft approached.
Interestingly, the Cubs have yet to take a high schooler.
#198 David Garner, RHP, Michigan State JR (BA #248)
Four straight college righties now for the Cubs. No seniors yet, though.
At 5-foot-11, 175 pounds, David Garner’s size doesn’t intimidate hitters. However, his slight frame is not an indication of the power the right-hander possesses. Garner owns a fastball that can touch 95 mph, while his hard-breaking slider is his primary out-pitch. He has a free delivery and aggressive approach, and his electric stuff has led to 192 strikeouts in 217 2/3 innings pitched for Michigan State during his three years in East Lansing. At times, Garner can lose his control, as he walked 27 batters this year, while also hitting six and throwing 10 wild pitches. In his first two seasons at Michigan State, Garner was in and out of the rotation, but he made all 14 appearances as a starter during his junior year. He went 4-5 with a 4.10 ERA, lifting his career numbers to 15-12 and 3.97, respectively. Garner stood out in the Cape Cod League each of the past two summers, especially in 2012, when he was named to the West Division All-Star Team. In 43 1/3 innings for the Hyannis Harbor Hawks, Garner registered 41 strikeouts and a 3.12 ERA, both of which were good for top 20 in the league. Before becoming a Spartan, Garner was drafted by the Reds in the 33rd round (No. 997 overall) of the 2010 Draft.
#228 Sam Wilson, LHP, Lamar CC (BA #358)
Another college pitcher, this one a lefty from the JC ranks.
Wilson was drafted by the Rangers in the 20th round in 2010, but he chose to attend New Mexico. He was a two-way player as a freshman, but academic issues forced him to redshirt last season and he ultimately transferred to Lamar Community College this year. Wilson has continued as a two-way player for the Runnin’ Lopes, but his professional future is on the mound. He throws his fastball around 90 mph and he has touched 94 mph in the past. He also throws a curveball and a changeup, both of which have the potential to be Major League-average offerings. Wilson is athletic, has good size (he’s listed at 6-foot-1, 205 pounds) and repeats his delivery well.
#258 Charcer Burks, SS/CF, HS
A high schooler who is also a position player! Unfortunately, can’t find much about him online. The mentioned SS on the telecast, but mlb.com has him as a centerfielder. Here is a profile from a couple of years ago. Here are his football highlights.
#288 Zack Godley, RHP, University of Tennessee SR (BA #487)
And… the first senior of the day. Little bit of a surprise that it came this late. Another big righty, at 6’3″, 245. Closes out a pitching-heavy day for the Cubs. Led the SEC in innings this year with 6 complete games, and finished second in strikeouts. Here are some highlights.